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Two kinds of performance take place in these pages. There are the poems in roman script, which are given at least one page to themselves, and these are in a traditional lyric mode. There is no attempt to disguise this communication as anything other than poetry: crafted, affected, composed, musical, with affective designs on the reader. The poems in italics are usually two or more to a page. They ask the reader to take part in the pretence that they are not crafted, but are thoughts or dreams overheard. They bear some thematic relation to the lyric poems nearby, and they intend to create the impression of a mental space from which the lyric poems were written. One aim is to fictionalise the speaker. He is now not only the absent author, whose craft creates a distance between his emotion and his utterance, and therefore between him and the reader. If the reader is willing to suspend their disbelief, then the speaker becomes the character who is found muttering in italics, in between the poems proper. This may allow the reader to empathise more easily, and so be more easily moved. The italicised sections also act as milestones for the loose narrative that runs through this thesis. Early experiences of loss lead to alienation from the world as defences are built up to protect against pain. Love can break down such barriers and re-establish a connection, but this is painful and so it does not last. These poems explore the challenges we face in trying to stay connected to the world. A version of ‘Incorrigible Spring’ was submitted for assessment in the academic year 2016/17. The original can be found as an appendix.
Thesis, MFA Master of Fine Arts
Embargo Date: 2024-06-03
Embargo Reason: Thesis restricted in accordance with University regulations. Print and electronic copy restricted until 3rd June 2024
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